Every day across America twelve workers die on the job, according to Hilda L. Solis, US Secretary of Labor. Saturday, April 28, 2012 is Workers’ Memorial Day. April 28 is also the 41st anniversary of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the date that providing a safe and healthy workplace became required by law. At the time OSHA began, 38 workers died each day on the job.
Workers’ Memorial Day is recognized on an international basis. The Day was started, according to Your Rights at Work, by the Canadian Union of Public Employees in 1984, and adopted by the Canadian Labor Congress the following year. The day has since been officially recognized by more than 20 countries, including the USA. The United Nations (UN) began commemorating the Day in 1996. International Workers Memorial Day is a day on which workers are remembered who died, were injured or fell ill due to unsafe, unhealthy or unsustainable work and workplaces around the world. The Day is also utilized to recognize specific issues affecting the health and safety of workers.
The US Department of Labor is taking steps to raise awareness of Workers’ Memorial Day, and its meaning. They are initiating a social media campaign to spread the message. People will have an opportunity to share stories of those touched by injuries in the workplace. The hope is that “each story that expresses the human costs of cutting corners on safety can educate others about the vital need to protect every worker in this country”.
Secretary of Labor, Hilda L. Solis, plans to lead the Action Summit on Worker Safety and Health at East Los Angeles College in Monterey Park, Calif. She plans to announce a new campaign launch with the message to keep workers safe, with a focus on educating workers and employers.
The Most Haunting Number by Hilda L. Solis, US Secretary of Labor 2012, McClatchy-Tribune International Workers’ Day Memorial Your Rights at Work
Workers’ Memorial Day: Making a Living Should Not Include Dying US DOL
Announcement: Kick-Off OSHA Media Advisory